Please Help New English Review
For our donors from the UK:
New English Review
New English Review Facebook Group
Follow New English Review On Twitter
Recent Publications by New English Review Authors
The Oil Cringe of the West: The Collected Essays and Reviews of J.B. Kelly Vol. 2
edited by S.B. Kelly
The Impact of Islam
by Emmet Scott
Sir Walter Scott's Crusades and Other Fantasies
by Ibn Warraq
Fighting the Retreat from Arabia and the Gulf: The Collected Essays and Reviews of J.B. Kelly. Vol. 1
edited by S.B. Kelly
The Literary Culture of France
by J. E. G. Dixon
Hamlet Made Simple and Other Essays
by David P. Gontar
Farewell Fear
by Theodore Dalrymple
The Eagle and The Bible: Lessons in Liberty from Holy Writ
by Kenneth Hanson
The West Speaks
interviews by Jerry Gordon
Mohammed and Charlemagne Revisited: The History of a Controversy
Emmet Scott
Why the West is Best: A Muslim Apostate's Defense of Liberal Democracy
Ibn Warraq
Anything Goes
by Theodore Dalrymple
Karimi Hotel
De Nidra Poller
The Left is Seldom Right
by Norman Berdichevsky
Allah is Dead: Why Islam is Not a Religion
by Rebecca Bynum
Virgins? What Virgins?: And Other Essays
by Ibn Warraq
An Introduction to Danish Culture
by Norman Berdichevsky
The New Vichy Syndrome:
by Theodore Dalrymple
Jihad and Genocide
by Richard L. Rubenstein
Spanish Vignettes: An Offbeat Look Into Spain's Culture, Society & History
by Norman Berdichevsky



















Thursday, 14 July 2011
What About Qaddafy's Air Force? Why Leave It To Be Used By Libyans Of Any Camp? Bookmark and Share

UK short of Libya targets, not resources -source

 

By Mohammed Abbas

LONDON, July 14 (Reuters) - Britain is running short of military targets in Libya as the forces of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi are increasingly using civilian infrastructure and vehicles, a defence ministry source said on Thursday.

Britain is a leading member of a coalition enforcing a United Nations-mandated air campaign over Libya to protect civilians from Gaddafi's forces, who have proved resilient despite nearly four months of devastating air strikes.

The length of the bombing campaign has raised concerns in Britain and abroad that coalition members, of whom many have cut defence spending to tackle budget deficits, will not be able to sustain the tempo of attacks.

"We're not short of military assets. It's the targets. There's only so many targets you can take out whilst minimising civilian damage," the senior source told Reuters.

"We've had credible intelligence that Gaddafi is using civilian warehouses. He's definitely changing his tactics," said the source, who also echoed NATO claims that Gaddafi's forces were using civilian vehicles to deter air strikes.

Western states are frustrated by a five-month rebel campaign that -- despite support from NATO warplanes -- has failed to overthrow Gaddafi, and some governments are now looking instead to talks as a way out of the conflict.

Civilian casualties undermine NATO's mission to protect Libyan non-combatants. In June, the alliance admitted that its weapons destroyed a house in Tripoli in which Libyan officials said nine civilians were killed.

Senior British military staff have publicly warned of the growing strain on their resources caused by the Libya campaign, prompting calls for the defence ministry to re-open a comprehensive review of the military published last autumn.

Britain also has 9,500 troops in Afghanistan, the second largest contingent of foreign troops after the United States.

Under the Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR), the 34 billion pound ($55 billion) defence budget will be cut by eight percent in real terms over the next four years, part of measures to tackle Britain's budget deficit.

The defence source dismissed calls to revisit the review.

"Current military deployments fall within the assumptions of the SDSR, and there's still slack. We haven't dropped any of our standing commitments," the source said.

Senior military figures and analysts are also concerned that major defence programmes will be at risk if there is no firm commitment to increase defence spending after 2015.

The programmes are part of the military's "Future Force 2020" plan, and include replacing Britain's fleet of nuclear-armed submarines, building two new aircraft carriers and buying both Eurofighter and Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) combat jets.

Lockheed Martin builds the JSF while the Eurofighter is made by a consortium of Italy's Finmeccanica , Britain's BAE Systems and EADS .

Prime Minister David Cameron said last year it was his "strong view" that defence spending should rise after 2015 but offered no guarantees, and with the next general election due in 2015, the decision could be out of his control.

The defence source was confident spending would rise.

"If there isn't an increase post 2015, that would threaten future force 2020. Everyone knows that, which is why we're confident of getting an increase."

Posted on 07/14/2011 8:39 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Comments
No comments yet.

Most Recent Posts at The Iconoclast
Search The Iconoclast
Enter text, Go to search:
The Iconoclast Posts by Author
The Iconoclast Archives
sun mon tue wed thu fri sat
   1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30    

Subscribe
Via: email  RSS